Play ball: Things to know about NCAA super regionals

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Super regionals are the next stop on the NCAA baseball tournament’s Road to Omaha.

Four of the best-of-three series are Friday through Sunday: North Carolina State (33-17) at Arkansas (49-11), Stanford (36-15) at Texas Tech (39-15), Mississippi (44-20) at Arizona (43-15) and East Carolina (44-15) at Vanderbilt (43-15).

The four series Saturday through Monday: South Florida (31-28) at Texas (45-15), Notre Dame (33-11) at Mississippi State (43-15), Dallas Baptist (40-16) vs. Virginia (33-24) at Columbia, South Carolina, and LSU (38-23) at Tennessee (48-16).

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The eight winners advance to the College World Series in Omaha starting June 19.

South Florida has emerged as the tournament’s lovable underdog, but LSU is the sentimental favorite of many fans for as long as the Tigers keep going. Their coach, active career wins leader Paul Mainieri, announced before the tournament he will retire after this season.

LSU had to win four of its last five SEC series to get an at-large bid as a No. 3 regional seed, and the Tigers beat Oregon twice in two days to advance.

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Now it’s on to SEC rival Tennessee. The Volunteers swept the Tigers in Knoxville in March, beating them in walk-off fashion twice, and are the final obstacle between Mainieri and his sixth CWS appearance since 2008.

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